Gor Mahia vs AFC Leopards is a matchup that has always defined the heart of Kenya's football fanaticism. And while Gor Mahia have emerged as the favourites in recent years, a debate on which club is richer is yet to be fully exploited.
Perhaps a look at each of the club's history would help shed some light on the two clubs that define Kenya's football. Because for any ardent Kenyan soccer fan, a Gor Mahia vs AF derby is always unmissable regardless of the team you support.
But when you look at the recent successes of each side, Gor Mahia emerges as the winner. Nicknamed Kogallo, Gor bagged their 20th FKF Kenya Premier League last season.
Bitter rivals, AFC Leopards, on the other hand, finished the season in 8th spot. Many would agree that AFC Leopards have experienced a decline in recent years even though Ingwe or Chui as they are popularly known will always define Kenya's football soul alongside Kogallo.
So, let's look at the recent success of both teams, which hugely impact their financial standing.
Gor Mahia vs AF Leopards: When were the two clubs founded?
Now, let's briefly look at when the two clubs were founded to get a sense of their financial muscles to this date.
Gor Mahia (Kogalo)
Gor Mahia was founded in February 1968, which makes it one of the oldest football clubs in Kenya. Fifty-five years later Kogallo which was established as a Luo Union and later Luo Sports Club, have always represented the Luo community.
A Gor Mahia vs AFC Leopards is always a clash between the Luo community and the neighbouring Luhya community, whom they consider ‘mashemeji' (in-laws).
Surviving for five decades and a half now would not have been possible without financial prowess. Most importantly, politicians such as Tom Mboya (deceased) and Jaramogi Odinga (also deceased) who helped found the club helped Kogala navigate financial challenges.
Note that the current Gor Mahia patron is Kenya's former Primer Minister, Raila Odinga.
AFC Leopards (Ingwe/Chui)
AFC Leopards on the other hand was founded in was founded in March 1964, four years earlier than Gor Mahia.
After 59 years, AFC Leopards have not faded away. Formerly the Abaluhya Football Club, AFC Leopards was founded by a community of football enthusiasts.
And like Gor Mahia, AFC Leopards have largely drawn their financial support from ardent community supporters and politicians who sometimes use the club's high placement in Kenya's domestic league to advance their political agenda.
Gor Mahia vs AFC Leopards: Which Club has the most KPL trophies?
The success of any football club is always hinged on the number of trophies won since its establishment.
In the case of Gor Mahia vs AFC Leopards, the difference favours Kogallo.
Gor Mahia won their 20th Kenya Premier League title in the 2022/23 season, which was not only historic but also opened a wide gap between Kogalo and other KPL clubs.
🟢 | ON THIS DAY
Exactly one week ago today….. we won our 20th league title at Kasarani Stadium, the most in the region and still more to come.
— GOR MAHIA FC (@OfficialGMFC) July 2, 2023
AFC Leopards on the other hand have won the Kenyan Premier League title a record 13 times. From the stats, it means Gor Mahia are the richer side in terms of KPL trophies won.
Because the Kenya Premier League trophy always comes with prize money, no doubt Kogalo's financial muscle in that regard supersedes AFC Leopard's.
Other honours/trophies for Gor Mahia and AFC Leopards
A look further down the history of Gor Mahia and AFC Leopards reveals that the two clubs have bagged several honours in their decorated history.
For example, Gor boasts 11 FKF president trophies, with the most recent winning in 2021. On the flip side, AFC Leopards have 10 FKF president trophies, winning their latest one in 2017.
Notably, Gor Mahia have 5 Kenya Super Cups while AFC Leopards have none.
On the regional front, Gor Mahia boasts three CECAFA Club Cups while AFC Leopards have 8 of those.
And while the honours like the top 8 KPL Cup have not been well-determined in recent years, often put off for lack of sponsorship, Gor's success on the continental stage has been exceptional, especially if you compare it to other Kenyan football clubs.
Gor Mahia made it to the African Championships 8 times and more recently, five appearances in the CAF Champions League to date beginning 2014.
Notably, Gor Mahia were African Cup winners in 1987, a competition that was founded in 1975 but later replaced by the CAF Champions League. However, Kogalo were axed from the 2023 CAF Champions League after failing to pay former players who had reported the club to FIFA.
AFC Leopards have made 12 appearances in the CAF Champions League, making it to the semi-finals in 1968, four years after the club was founded.
Ingwe have once played in the CAF Confederation Cup but were eliminated at the preliminaries in 20110.
Gor Mahia on the other hand have had five appearances in the CAF Confederation Cup appearances, making it to the quarter-finals in the 2018-19 season. Kogallo have qualified for the CAF Champions League 15 times, reaching the quarterfinals in 1969 and 1992.
Gor Mahia vs AFC Leopards: Club sponsorship
Given the role that Gor Mahia and AFC Leopards have always played in shaping football in Kenya, noting that they both have the majority of fans, the two clubs have always had the most expensive players and foreign coaches.
The financial muscles of Gor Mahia vs AFC Leopards means sponsors looking to cash on the fame of both clubs has always been on the lookout for opportunities to sign agreements with either Kogalo or Ingwe.
In recent years, Kenya's betting companies such as Betika and SportPesa have been the main sponsors for Gor Mahia and AFC Leopards, ploughing millions of shillings into the two clubs every season.
SportPesa have renewed their sponsorship deal with Gor Mahia to the tune of Ksh.240 million for three years, which means the club will have Ksh.80 million worth of sponsorship from Sportpesa until 2025.
Bitter rivals, AFC Leopards will enjoy a sponsorship deal worth Ksh 65 million a season from Betika, another giant betting company in Kenya. It means Betika will spend up to Ksh. 195 million starting in 2022 for the next three years.
— AFC Leopards SC (@AFCLeopards) July 29, 2023
Gor Mahia vs AFC Leopards: Who is richer?
In concluding our discussion on the Gor Mahia vs AFC Leopards, especially on which club is richer, we emphasize that silverware, club ownership, support from fans and sponsorship are central to each's club's success.
Thus, considering all the above, Gor Mahia easily wins in the financial battle with AFC Leopards.
This article was most recently revised and updated 2 months ago